Twins owner to accept offers for team

Feb. 20, 2002 at 8:58 PM
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MINNEAPOLIS, Feb. 20 (UPI) -- With contraction tabled, Minnesota Twins owner Carl Pohlad announced Wednesday that the club is in the process of establishing a procedure to formally accept and analyze offers to purchase the franchise.

"I believe that our fans in the Upper Midwest want the Twins to continue to play here, which may best be achieved through the sale of the team," Pohlad said.

Pohlad's desire to rid himself of the team has been well documented this offseason. Minnesota reportedly was one of the targets of contraction but through legislation and the owner's inability to work with the player's union, the issue of eliminating two teams was pushed back at least one year.

Contraction offered Pohlad a chance to sell his team at an inflated price. The club is rumored to be valued at around $125 million -- Pohlad might have gotten $150 million or more through cotraction -- and he already has had discussions with Alabama businessman Donald Watkins.

Minneapolis attorney Ralph Strangis will coordinate the sale with the objective of obtaining a fair value and satisfactory new stadium resolution.

Pohlad's lack of passion in fighting contraction made him a target of fans' frustration during the offseason and the team's uphill battle to get a new stadium built has not helped ease talk of the team being eliminated if or when contraction occurs.

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